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Close Up, by Esther Verhoef

April 8, 2015

Felony of the Week: Close-Up, by Esther Verhoef

I dropped the ball. In early 2010 we published Close-Up, a sly, unusual thriller translated from the original Dutch. In the ordinary course of things, I would have jumped on it months earlier – having review copies printed up, sending those copies out to reviewers and influential bookstores, trying to drum up some buzz (and isn’t that a mixed metaphor!). But my mom had died five months earlier, my father had made an abrupt descent into dementia, and I was…distracted. So Close-Up never got the Felonious attention it deserves.

And make no mistake, it does deserve attention. Margot, the character at its center is a textbook example of depression. And as you follow her story, you, the reader, begin to see in yourself the textbook responses. There’s pity, certainly. Irritation at her bull-headed passivity. And slowly, an edgy concern, as Margot seems drawn into a scenario that grows more menacing by the minute. “DON’T GO THERE!” you want to holler, like the audience at a horror-movie. But she does go there. And what she finds…will confound your expectations and knock your socks off. This week, a 50% discount (doubling down on our usual discount as apology for dropping that ball).

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